My daughter is in her first year in this huge and under staffed high school. I am not impressed with the majority of the teachers. Except in one subject, no one seems to foster curiosity. Textbooks are rare and outdated and nobody uses them. The kids write the class content off the board and It is all about memorizing the notes to replicate them in time for one of the overwhelming number of tests and quizzes. Homework and class work impacts the final grade only marginally. Student life is all about procedures and not getting caught violating any and the teachers have to spend ways too much time on crowd control. Unfortunately, the present sheriff deputies are fairly busy. Granted, many symptoms are not Jordan specific but common in all big DPS high schools and teachers would love to administer fewer tests. I do like the current administration and hope they can improve the student experience.
My daughter is in her third year at Jordan and overall she has had a wonderful experience there. First and foremost I am impressed with the teaching staff. Despite the attack on public educators in our state the Jordan staff has remained constant with a high degree of professionalism and quality teaching.
She has been able to pursue her passions of writing and drama at a very high level while being challenged in her AP classes. The students at Jordan are very accepting of one another and I'm so grateful to have my daughter in a public school where she can experience peers who are from different backgrounds and experiences. I know she is a better person for it.
On some level I find these terms offensive and racially charge based of some myth that all children need is to try harder and they will succeed. Kids growing up in poverty need a LOT more than grit to succeed in this country.
As a public school I feel the teachers are motivated not only to teach but to fight against poverty and racism. The faculty bring this passion into the classroom. My daughter has gained a great understanding of her community and the times we live in because of the empathic teaching at Jordan.
I think Jordan is an excellent school. While there have been some changes in the demographics, these changes have benefited Jordan. I think Jordan provides the student with an excellent education. There is a tendency for some people to rate schools on the basis on where the students come from( i.e children from poor families = poor schools. However, the educational experts contend that one has to look at where all children are going. The year that my children graduated, the number of students who were selected to attend top colleges (i.e., Davidson, Yale, UNC-CH, Harvard, Middlebury, Duke, etc., ) exceeded that of some of the private schools in the area. I think because the enrolled students were exposed to diversity, , they were more attractive to the top schools then the students who attended "elusive" high schools. Don't be deceived by arbitrary ratings.
My child is doing well at Jordan but she absolutely hates going there. She says it is like a prison with bare block walls and no daylight. Students in some of her classes (particularly Spanish class) rap dirty songs and walk around during class, making it hard for her to learn. Some teachers have no control in the classroom and there is no good way to keep disruptive kids under control or remove them from the classroom. She says she could get much more work done in less time if she were home schooled. She says teachers waste her time and then she must spend six hours a night studying to complete the loads of homework. Some classes do not have textbooks but the school spends money on expensive whiteboards and the teachers picket for higher pay. I wish NC had school vouchers so the schools could compete for students and dollars.
Don't be fooled by overall rankings of Jordan High School. Look at Test Scores and detailed rankings and different groups and see that rankings for kids who want to do well, can and will do well at this school. This is an absolute terms and relative to both Statewide standards and the Chapel Hill public high schools. For example, I don't know how academically gifted is defined but I would say my daughter is not gifted yet she does extremely well on statewide tests. As of August 2013, Jordan has a ranking of 10 for academically gifted students on state tests. East Chapel Hill's ranking is 7.
I am currently a sophomore at Jordan and it is a very great school. I am currently ranked number one and I have found that it is a great school with academic challenges. Before Jordan I had no trouble sliding through school with out working at all , however I have learned how to study and how to work by way of rigorous APs and challenging honors courses. I have loved my teachers, majority of them generally care about us students and are readily available when we need help. I have also found the social aspects of Jordan to be wonderful, we have amazing sports teams, minus our football team who just lost the homecoming game, and I find that they are a great social outlet. Many of the students come to the football games regardless of the fact that we are loosing to see our friends. The administration is wonderful, and very caring. I have personally made an appointment to talk to the principle about fundraising and he listened and he was fully supportive of me and he still remembers me to this day and checks up on me. I would recommend Jordan 100%, it is a wonderful school.
My child is a freshman at Jordan. The school is OK as far as safety, teacher involvement and other standard measurements. The school does have a very strong liberal bias. Freshman Focus class which is a required class is mostly an introduction into the liberal ideas. Some teachers (again freshman focus) have said they do not want parents input.
Jordan High has nurtured my son and enabled him to excel. He will attend a top university next year thanks to the excellent instruction he has received from some highly capable and motivated teachers. The resources are there, but the student body is a very heterogeneous mix of motivation, talent, and home support. The new principal is a huge disappointment- too bad the last one stayed for such a short time.